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Fischbein, S.V. (2015). Panel Report, IPA Congress Boston 2015: Is Translation between Psychoanalytic Concepts Possible?. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 96(6):1671-1675.

(2015). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 96(6):1671-1675

Panel Report, IPA Congress Boston 2015: Is Translation between Psychoanalytic Concepts Possible? Language Translation

Susana Vinocur Fischbein

Chair: Dana Birksted-Breen

Panellists: Paul Denis, Jorge Canestri, Rachel Blass

Reporter: Susana Vinocur Fischbein

Dana Birksted-Breen opened the panel remarking that the subject was close to her heart, as it was related to the possibility of translation and communication between different linguistic cultures. She posed a specific question: how can we promote communication without falling into the danger of reductionism, of profound misunderstanding and/or appropriation? All of these are also important questions connected to the IJP at international congresses.

Paul Denis maintained that we should think about two ways of using psychoanalytic models: either we use models as a tool, letting them cohabit alongside each other in a mosaic like relationship; or we unify what we receive from our teachers and from our readings and elaborate our own personal model. This elaboration of a personal model is sometimes explicit but generally implicit.

Furthermore, behind each explicit psychoanalytic model there is an author, who has been particularly sensitive to an aspect of mental functioning and the process of psychoanalytic treatment. New models may correspond to a broadening of the author's field of vision, but other models can correspond to an author's restriction of the field of vision or failure to take into consideration fundamental factors of psychoanalytic understanding.

Denis illustrated the difficulties of translation of one model to another with Kohut's successive theoretical formulations.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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